“(I) had 5 job interviews in the company where I work now, in three departments and they rejected me four times. For the last time it worked out and I got the job. I am also studying for a master’s degree and I feel fine.”
#mtopstorytelling tells the story of our MTOP associates. MTOP associates are highly skilled refugees mostly from Syria, Iran, Irak and Afghanistan.
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My name is Ashraf Ahdaly and I’m 30 years old. I’m from Syria and have been here in Austria for 3.5 years. I studied pharmacy and my degree was recognized as a bachelors degree. I did an internship in a pharmacy in Vienna and I have been working as a laboratory technician for a month now in a large pharmaceutical company.
When I came to Austria I wanted to find an apartment first and that was so difficult. I am here in a new country, without friends, different culture, I do not know anybody and I can not speak the language, although I speak English very well, because I studied in a private university. The second thing is the nostrification of my degree, I had no idea how to do that or how to enroll in college. The third thing is to find a job. It’s so hard to find a job here in Vienna, because there is so much competition. I got money from the city until I enrolled at the university, then you lose the granted minimum income. I really want to find work so that I can finance my studies, but I can not speak the language, so my wish is put on ice.
Step by step
I first concentrated on learning German and I did the C1 level. And I met some friends, by accident they are also pharmacists and we did a group on WhatsApp. It helped me a lot to learn German and now the group is so big. I also worked in a retirement home. And I got to know so many friends from Austria and they helped me a lot to speak the language, to exchange about the culture and to integrate in society. I think that’s so important that you have friends from the country. A friend of mine has asked someone if he knows a pharmacy and that person has contacted the pharmacy and forwarded my records and made an appointment. Then I went there and had a job interview. I got the internship and that was so great. After the internship, I did 7 interviews in 2 months. I had 5 job interviews in the company where I work now, in 3 different departments and the rejected me 4 times. For the last time it worked out and I got the job. I am also studying for a masters degree and I feel very fine.
Life is more fun when you live in the moment.
So we always have good and bad experiences and we always have to be optimistic and motivated to achieve our goals. -Ashraf
*Ashraf wrote his story in German. His text was translated by the MTOP team.